MOSCOW (MRC) -- The Omicron coronavirus variant kicked oil prices lower late last week and has sapped refining margins, but with crude futures rallying on Monday, the impact could be limited, reported Reuters.
Governments worldwide have imposed curbs on travelers to try limit the spread of Omicron, first detected in southern Africa, as scientists race to determine the level of risk.
Oil prices plunged more than 10% on Friday - their largest daily drop since April 2020 - but recovered some of those losses on Monday, standing up nearly 5% on the day. Analysts said the Friday sell-off had been excessive.
Refining margins fell further, increasing the impact of new coronavirus curbs that had already been rolled out in Europe.
On Friday, European diesel barge refining margins touched a three-month low of about USD8 a bbl, although oil price volatility kept trading liquidity low. Jet fuel cargo margins were assessed at about USD7.7 a bbl, near a two-and-a-half month low.
"This broad-based correction reflected fears that the Omicron variant would turn into a major headwind to oil demand," bank JP Morgan said, referring to Friday's price move.
But it said it expected demand recovery from the pandemic to continue even though consumption forecasts had weakened before last week's sell-off.
We remind that, as MRC informed before, earlier this month, TotalEnergies and Daimler Truck AG signed an agreement on their joint commitment to the decarbonization of the road freight in the European Union. The partners will collaborate in the development of ecosystems for heavy-duty trucks running on hydrogen, with the intent to demonstrate the attractiveness and effectiveness of trucking powered by clean hydrogen and the ambition to play a lead role in kickstarting the rollout of hydrogen infrastructure for transportation.
We also remind that TotalEnergies has recently inaugurated the extension of Synova in Normandy, the French leader in recycled polypropylene (PP) production. TotalEnergies is therefore doubling its mechanical recycling production capacity for recycled polymers, to meet growing demand for sustainable polymers from customers, such as Automotive Manufacturer (Auto OEM) and the construction industry.
According to MRC's ScanPlast report, PP shipments to the Russian market were 1,138,510 tonnes in January-September 2021, up by 30% year on year. Supply of propylene homopolymer (homopolymer PP) and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply of injection moulding statistical copolymers of propylene (PP random copolymers) decreased significantly.